Wedding Color and Chocolate Too!

June 30th, 2009

Brides are always looking for ways to add color to their reception.  The obvious ideas are flowers, linens, lighting.  Today I discovered a most unusual and wonderful way to not only add color,  but have the most awesome dessert table with a Colored Chocolate Fountain. You can rent the fountain or just purchase the chocolate or do both.  What a beautiful,  elegant yet whimsical and  colorful way to have dessert.  Here are some examples for you to feast your eyes on (talk about eye candy)!

Chocolate Fountain Buffet by Sir Chocolate

Chocolate Fountain Buffet by Sir Chocolate

Chocolate Fountain Colors

Chocolate Fountain Colors

Chocolate Fountain Colors

Chocolate Fountain Colors

Green Wedding: Not just a color anymore

June 29th, 2009

Many brides are concerned about being  eco friendly.  The following tips will  cover all the basics for being an Eco-Bride.

There is no longer such a thing as a “typical” wedding, but what is becoming more common now are couples concern for being “green”.  I am not talking about the color green, but the individuals who are more conscientious of the environment. Funny thing is you don’t really have to think too hard about being an Eco-Bride. It truly is easy and in many ways more cost effective. How can you go wrong, save money and go green?

Here are some easy tips to help with the planning of your “Green” day!

Location

1)  Choose somewhere that is a central location where you can have the ceremony and the reception in the same location, it lessens the travel and hassle for guests but also cuts down on the emission omitted from all the cars on the road.

2)  Also, think about having your event outside; not only do you cut costs in decorating, since who wants to take out the natural beauty of the setting, but you are using all the senses of nature to light your event and give it natural charm.

3)   If you are not interested in an outdoor venue, there are many non for profit venues that are available for rent that will help support a cause that you are personally believe in such as, an art gallery, zoo, garden, etc.

Stationary

1)  There are many materials that you can use that are better for the environment, such as: recycled handmade, hemp and organic cotton.

2)  Utilize the Internet and email e-cards and set up a website .  ewedding.com is great and free for 12 months  to let people know what the details of your wedding are so you don’t have to spend the money or waste paper with save the date cards and putting it all in the contents of the invitation.

The Big Day

1)  Table Cards ~ Try a unique twist; use an organic material to show your guests to the table, such a leaves, rocks or different items you can find that goes with your theme and location.

2)  Food ~ if you have a buffet style reception and you have left over food have the caterer arrange to have the remaining donated to a local food bank or homeless shelter.

3)  Floral arrangements ~ donate these to your guests to take home to enjoy while you are on your honeymoon or better yet, have them delivered to a local hospital to have sick patients enjoy them.

4)  Favors~ There are many favors that are eco friendly and charming, plantable favors and  coasters made of bamboo to name a few.

5)  Photography ~ it seems as though everyone has a digital camera. Make an announcement to your guests to share their pictures with the rest of your guests through a free Internet photo sharing site. Therefore, your guests can see all your photos, but only print the ones that have special meaning to them.

There are so many easy ways to “Go Green,” save money and stay true with the theme of your wedding. The best part of it all is you are creating something long lasting for more than you and your guests!

Thank you, Wedding Planner Sara Grube Cerny for your helpful suggestions.

 

DIY Reception Site Decorating Ideas

June 28th, 2009

What is the “elephant” in your reception site? Many receptions are held in centers, a club room in your community or someone’s home where there is a display case , a swing set, or something else that really needs disguising to make your reception the vision that you’re trying to attain. When I first began decorating receptions, I came across this many times. Often the best place for the bridal table or cake table  is right in front of the monstrosity we have to hide.  I’ve decorated a room that looked like a gym and one that looked like an underground parking lot (no exaggeration), the key is fabric and your favorite new friends at the hardware store.  You can use very inexpensive fabric, i.e. dress lining, sheets, etc. to accomplish your goal or find more luxurious fabrics in white or ivory in the closeout section of your fabric store.  You will be making a curtain. Don’t panic if you don’t sew. You can always use that iron on tape. The only “sewing” that’s required is making the hem at the top of the curtain for the rod to go through. You don’t need to hem the bottom, just make sure it’s long enough so you can fold the bottom under and puddle it on the floor. Make allowance in the height measurement of your fabric for the 2″ hem at the top.

Supplies you will need:  Fabric, iron on mending tape, 1 ” PVC pipes, PVC corners and connectors, acetone if you need to remove print on PVC pipes  (not necessary if hidden by the fabric), white duct tape to reinforce connectors if necessary, white plastic umbrella stands or cans filled with plaster.  Depending on how wide your curtain needs to be, you might need a stand or two in the middle with a vertical pole for support.  There are connectors that will allow for this as well. Optional: tulle, silk or fresh flowers, more fabric to swag over the curtain.

1)  Measure the area that needs to be hidden. You need to be concerned about the height as well as the width. If a bridal table or other table is being put in front of it make sure you allow for that in your measurement. Make the curtain so it not only covers your “elephant”, but will go a little beyond the width of whatever is in front of it.

2)  Multiply the measurement by 2 1/2 for the width of your curtain. Some fabrics are very wide so you will need less. Make a 2″ hem at the top of your fabric for the PVC pipe to go through.

3)  PVC, purchased from your local hardware store or home improvement center has corners you can purchase as well as connectors to make it as long as you need it to be and,  in this case, as high as you need it to be as well.

4)  Fill plastic umbrella stands with water or sand to give them weight . You can do this on sight to make the transporting of them easier. The PVC pipe fits well into the umbrella stand. You can also fill large coffee cans with plaster, insert the PVC and make sure it dries with the pipe straight. You should spray paint the can so it doesn’t stand out, but blends into the curtain.

I have some pictures to demonstrate what you are aiming for:

Display Case in bad need of disguise

Display Case in bad need of disguise

Curtain covering Bookcase

Curtain covering Bookcase

Ugly Wall

Ugly Wall

Curtain hiding ugly wall (my balloon decorating days)

Curtain hiding ugly wall (my balloon decorating days)

I hope these visuals will inspire you to see you can disguise just about anything. These pictures are from my early decorating days, but I think you’ll get the idea when you see them. When you watch what Party Planners do with fabric nowadays, you’ll see this is something you can accomplish on a limited budget yourself. Twinkle lights, tulle, swags of fabric,  flowers, all will add to the romantic and elegant look you can achieve over the curtain.  I’d love to hear what you’ve come up with to accomplish the “hiding the elephant” at your reception.

Destination Wedding Closer To Home

June 24th, 2009

Does your  destination wedding have to be a far off tropical place like Jamaica or the Bahamas, etc.?  With the economy being what it is, you can still have a wonderful destination wedding and keep it closer to home so the travel expenses won’t be so difficult for your guests. If you’re a romantic, how about the South? There are many beautiful, romantic Southern mansions that would make a gorgeous backdrop for your wedding. Can you picture your bridal party taking their pictures under a beautiful oak tree that’s hundreds of years old? Can you see yourself being driven in to the site on a wonderful horse and carriage? Mint Juleps served in those elegant silver  mint julep cups. There are a few things to consider if you’re loving this idea:

1)  It can get very hot and humid in the summer in the South. Check the Farmers Almanac for weather conditions at different times of the year. It would be best to choose Spring or Fall, especially if your wedding will be outdoors.

2)  If you are having an outdoor wedding, you MUST have a “Plan B”.  The weather can be very unpredictable, and you will feel a lot calmer if you know there is something in place in case it rains.

3)  You will want your makeup artist to use an airbrushing technique to keep your makeup looking light and clean, especially in humidity. It has silicone in it so it won’t rub off.

4)  Choosing a location in a Historic District gives your guests something to look forward to exploring after the wedding day.

For  inspiration:

Palmer House, Charleston, S.C.

Palmer House, Charleston, S.C.

Palmer House S.C. Ocean View

Palmer House S.C. Ocean View

Mint Julep Cups

Mint Julep Cups

chandeleirs in trees

chandeliers in trees

Wedding Under Wood Arbor

Wedding Under Wood Arbor

Decoration for Wood Arbor

Decoration for Wood Arbor

Photos of arbor by Adrienne Page

Cake by: Signature Cakes by Vicki

Cake by: Signature Cakes by Vicki

Horse and Carriage

Horse and Carriage

For your favors, you could give an  ice cream scoop as a reminder of the wonderful Southern hospitality you all have experienced,  or an elegant silver Travel Candle as a remembrance of their destination wedding experience.

Candy Buffet Tips & Inspiration

June 22nd, 2009

A Candy Buffet has become a very trendy, popular way of offering sweet treats for your guests to take home.  You can choose a nice variety of candy in your colors and do a combination of colors, or you can do a variety of candy in different shades of one color.  Think  outside the box for containers.  Containers don’t have to be made for holding candy, you can  borrow glass vases  or containers  in different shapes and sizes for interest .  Isn’t this the perfect excuse for hitting your local garage sales and thrift stores?  Of course, your local craft store would have glass containers as well.  Or, if you’re doing a shower, engagement party or rehearsal dinner and want to use this kind of set up, you can be as creative as you want for the containers.  If you have a theme, tie your candy buffet in with your theme.  Look at planters, boxes, toys, etc. and repurpose them.  We have a shoe store chain that sells women’s shoes very inexpensively.  Sometimes they have an offer where you buy one pair and get the other free.  Why not use a cute shoe filled with candy? Get a variety of colors or styles.  How about purses?  They can be lined with plastic and filled up with candies.  Or just set little cello bags of candy in them.  Let your creativity shine through.

You’re probably wondering how to figure out how much candy you will need.  I would suggest about 4 oz. per person.  There are 16 oz. to a pound .

1) How many guests do you expect?

2) How many varieties of candy will you be offering?  This will determine how many containers you will want.

3) You need to  figure out the total capacity of all your containers.  Then the number of containers times the ounces  per container  (16 oz in a pound)  and this would give you a rough idea of the  amount of candy to buy.  Keep in mind you can subtract several pounds to account for the non-takers.

4) Try to find different heights and shapes of your containers and if you can elevate some of them, it makes the buffet table more attractive.

5) You can create a cute slogan to put on the candy buffet.  Two suggestions are:

Sweet Memories

How Sweet It Is……

Sweet Remembrance

I welcome any other suggestions that you’ve found for bulk candy or slogans.

www.metrocandy.com ,www.candywharehouse.com ,are  good sources  for bulk candy.  Favors By Serendipity  has wonderful candy coated chocolate covered sunflower seeds in all the popular colors.   Bags for your candy buffet can be varied and fun.  And there are many  boxes and labels you can use.

Now for the inspiration:

Candy Buffet

Candy Buffet

candy buffet variety

candy buffet variety

Candy Buffet Monochromatic

Candy Buffet Monochromatic

Candy Buffet Different Levels

Candy Buffet Different Levels

Breakfast at Tiffany Bridal Shower Decorating Ideas

June 17th, 2009
When I think of  Tiffany I think of a gorgeous shade of blue accented with white  and lots of bling!  This is one time when you cannot have too much bling.  Use the beautiful blue as accents and you can keep your linens white.  Or use a white table cloth under a tiffany blue topper and use white and crystal accents.  Keep it elegant but sparkly and you will create a beautiful, imaginative  event.
Here is some inspiration to get you started:
Image: Cake Girls

Image: Cake Girls

 
Tiffany Box With Flowers

Tiffany Box With Flowers

Tiffany Cake Table

Tiffany Cake Table

Tiffany Centerpiece

Tiffany Centerpiece

Tiffany Cupcakes With Diamond Rings

Tiffany Cupcakes With Diamond Rings

Diamond Paperweights on Tables

Diamond Paperweights on Tables

Diamon Rings in Cupcakes

Diamond Rings in Cupcakes

Tiffany Box Cake

Tiffany Box Cake

Image: Just Cupcakes

Image: Just Cupcakes

All White Centerpiece

All White Centerpiece

For decorating  ideas you can:

(1)Use Tiffany colored boxes wrapped in white ribbon stacked on tables for centerpieces – filled with diamond paperweights that can be given as prizes for games played.

(2) Hat boxes for decorations. You could put a stack of different sizes arranged on the buffet table. You could have the top one open and fake pearls hanging out of it, etc.

(3) Collect  silver pieces from second hand stores, family and friends to use as decorations. A candelabra, a square silver tray for the “Tiffany box” cake, boxes overflowing with pearls.  Wrap packages to look like the “Tiffany Box” and put pearls inside and use them for the centerpieces.

(4) Use plastic martini glasses, stacked on top of each other (in a pyramid) with crystals glued to the base.  Have a signature “Blue” colored drink served.

(5) Spray paint branches white, add fine opalescent glitter when wet.  Put branches into a crystal vase. Hang crystals from branches with tiffany blue ribbons for buffet table.

(6) If you want fresh flowers for the centerpieces, spray paint or wrap the bottom of the box to look like half of a Tiffany box.  Use white ribbon to make it look like it’s wrapped with ribbon and fill the box with all white flowers.  If possible, insert a small crystal into the openings of some of the flowers, such as roses.

(7)  White cupcakes or cupcakes decorated with blue frosting on silver tray stands with a faux diamond ring in each cupcake and sprinkle the diamond rings on the tables.

(8) Cover top of cake table or buffet table with bunched tulle.  Use a Diamond Ring napkin holder and pull parts of the tulle through the napkin ring.  Use Diamond Paperweights in different sizes on the table top or cake table.

(9) Give Diamond Ring keychains as your favors.

 

Tips for a Summer Bridal Shower

June 15th, 2009

Your bridal shower during the summer months can be a wonderful, festive, outdoor event.  This is the perfect time to choose bright colors in your flowers, tableware and linens.  Want to make it fun and simple?  How about a  festive  look with Mexican food you can bring in from your favorite local Mexican restaurant?  Set the tables by alternating the colors of your linens, i.e. pink napkins on an orange table cloth, and visa versa on every other table.  Step back and make sure the color combos look balanced in the space.  Spice it up with some maracas  tucked into the napkins with ribbons to hold it in place.  Fun plastic margarita glasses add to the festivities.  I’ve found wonderful large paper flowers that we’ve strung on  the trees or from a ceiling which come in beautiful colors that would coordinate with your flowers and linens.  If you’re fortunate enough to live near San Diego (which I do), you can visit Old Town and find a wealth of  cheerful  items that are very festive, yet not tacky looking. 

Image: Martha Stewart Weddings

Image: Martha Stewart Weddings

Image: Oriental Trading

Image: Oriental Trading

Image: Oriental Trading

Image: Oriental Trading

For the favors  send your guests home with a personalized Margarita Mix.

Of course, your event wouldn’t be the same without some Pinata’s placed on the food tables for decoration, or they too can be hanging from the trees or ceiling.

 To keep it fun and lively find Sombreros which can be tied to the backs of  the chairs to add to your decor and can be used for The Mexican Hat Dance.   I promise you everyone will be laughing and having a great time !!!!  (especially if you keep those Margaritas flowing).

Fall Wedding Inspiration

June 13th, 2009

While many of us are enjoying the long summer days, BBQ’s and the beach, it won’t be long before we will be in the Fall season and the colors will be changing and leaves falling.  While poking around the internet this morning I came across a  beautiful inspiration board that I wanted to share with those of you who might be having a Fall wedding.  I especially like the surprise of the lime green mixed with the deep burgundy and warm burnt orange tones.

Fall Color Pallette

Fall Color Pallette

There are also many Fall Theme Favors  that would work well with this color palette.

Wedding Planner: Should you hire one?

June 12th, 2009

 Planning a wedding can be very overwhelming.  So many details to attend to.  Actually you are planning two events, the wedding and the reception, and you want each to look perfect and be the day you’ve always dreamed about.  There is a plethora of information out there to help you do it yourself  if you’re so inclined.  In fact even the amount of information can be overwhelming.  Bridal Magazines, Wedding Shows on TV, Wedding Blogs, Twitter, etc. can all help give you inspiration for your special day.  However, if you feel you need and want professional help, a wedding planner can be invaluable. 

Although this list isn’t complete, it will give you an idea of where to start.  Some of the  details a wedding  planner would  point out to you to help focus on your vision are:

1)  Be realistic about your budget.  A good wedding planner can work magic with any budget, but you need to be firm about what you can spend.  In today’s economy, you don’t want to go over your head in debt for a wedding you can’t really afford.  There are many ways to make an event beautiful and elegant without spending $100,000.00 and this is where a wedding planner can really help.  They have all kinds of tricks up their sleeves. 

2) First determine what you want in your event design.  They would then know how to bring out your style.  Your gown style would be decided based on your event design.

3) Choose a location that is meaningful to you and do what you like, not to impress others.    Try to book your location a year ahead of time, they fill up quickly.  A money saving tip is to have your wedding early in the day or a Sunday.  We got a beautiful main ballroom in  relatively short notice (3 months)  because we were willing to do an affair on a Sunday night. 

3)  Look through portfolios of many florists before you decide who to hire.  Make sure they get your vision.  This is where bridal magazines are most helpful.  Get an organizer file, and cut out pictures of cakes, flowers, gowns, etc. so they can see what you like. They can help you save money by choosing flowers that are seasonal and use one type of flower for the whole arrangement.  Beautiful flowers doesn’t have to mean big budget.

4)  Carefully choose your photographer.  You will be looking at those pictures for the rest of your life and you don’t want to have regrets.  Your photographer is the historian of your wedding day.  Get formal shots and casual shots, color and black and white.  Get a good variety so you have choices of what you love.

Often brides are mesmerized by beautiful celebrity weddings.  One of our favorite wedding planning companies is Simply Natural Events.  They were recently featured in InStyle magazine for coordinating the wedding of actress Marissa Coughlan.

Look at the beautiful use of twinkle lights and the draping of the fabric.

Image by Lulu Photo

Image by Lulu Photo

Cake By Hot Cakes Bakes

Cake By Hot Cakes Bakes

Image: Simply Natural Events

Image: Simply Natural Events

I love the look  of  our Pear Candles  at each place setting.

I hope this will give you some things to think about when deciding if you should hire a wedding planner.

Cupcakes: Wedding Cake Alternative

June 10th, 2009

If you are on a tight budget, spending thousands on a wedding cake might be out of reach for you.  Many brides are now choosing beautifully decorated cupcakes as a lovely alternative for their shower, engagement party or wedding.  They can be store bought or you can make them yourself.  The fun comes in when you are creative in decorating them.  Even if you are “cupcake decorating challenged”, you can always use a beautiful edible flower on the top to give them an elegant look.  The question is though, how are you going to display the wedding cupcakes?  A perfect solution is found at Cupcake Tree where you can find stands in both square and round.  A large stand can hold up to 300 cupcakes, a small one as few as 40 and still look great. As you can see, they can be decorated to give you an elegant look in lieu of a wedding cake and can complement your party or wedding no matter what the theme or color. cupcaketree’s website even gives you tips. For those of you who are trying to be “green” it’s good to know the stands can be recycled.  I hope these ideas will inspire you:

cupcake-stand-

Image By Cupcake Tree

Image by Cupcake Tree

Image by Cupcake Tree

cupcake-stand-cupcake-tree-small-square1

Image by Cupcake Tree

cupcake-wedding-cakes

Image by Wedding Flowers And Reception Ideas

For your bridal shower, you can insert beautiful faux diamond engagement rings into each cupcake.  If your decorating abilities are limited, you can always use beautiful cupcake wrappers which come in many designs and colors.  Have fun!